“Collaboration” ≠ “content free-for-all”

 

It’s true that the tech comm and marketing staff usually have above-average writing skills. But isolating content in a protected silo is not the answer. The “unwashed masses” may be less skilled than the writers at crafting euphonious1 sentences, but they have useful information to contribute.

Collaboration doesn’t necessarily mean that anyone with access to a keyboard should be able to create, modify, or release content. Content collaboration can be managed. For example, a collaboration system can:

  • Codify review cycles. Send out notifications that request input on content within a specific timeframe. Track whether reviewers have offered input as requested.
  • Enable levels of access. Determine whether a particular employee can review, edit, create, and distribute information.
  • Manage the approval and release of content. Include mechanisms that indicate when content was approved, who approved it, and when it was released to end users (internal or external).

A functioning collaboration system allows the organization to manage contributions from writers with deep technical knowledge—even if their writing skills are relatively weak.

 

1 This extra-snooty word accurately reflects the attitude of many writers toward their non-writer colleagues.

 

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